A huge asteroid, almost as tall as the tallest building in the world, will fly over the Earth and will be visible to telescopes in Australian backyards.
NASA has classified asteroid 2022 RM4 as “potentially dangerous” due to its predicted trajectory close to the planet.
The asteroid measures around 750m in diameter, just before the Burj Khalifa in Dubai – the tallest building in the world – which rises to 828m.
It is expected to pass Earth on Tuesday, about 2.3 million kilometers from our planet at around 23,470 km / s.
This is the equivalent of six times the distance between the Moon and the Earth.
But Australians will have to wait around 2pm to take a look at their telescopes.
Astrophysicist, Dr. Brad Tucker, said the size of 2022 RM4 meant it was one to watch due to its size and estimated proximity.
But he said it was considered relatively “small” on the scale of the largest asteroids monitored by the authorities.
“It’s like you could follow a distant storm so that when it passes in 10 or 20 years, it doesn’t get too close,” said Dr. Tucker, a colleague at the Astronomy and Astrophysics Research School. of the ANU. he told NCA NewsWire.
NASA maintains a narrow database of the orbits of known near-Earth objects, with only a small fraction presenting themselves as “potentially dangerous asteroids”.
“These objects are defined as asteroids larger than about 460 feet (140 meters) in size with orbits that bring them within 4.6 million miles (7.5 million km) of Earth’s orbit around the Sun,” says the NASA website.
“Nobody should be overly concerned about the impact of an asteroid or a comet on Earth.
“The threat to a single person from traffic accidents, disease, other natural disasters and various other problems is much higher than the threat from NEOs.”